Pre-season begins for Exmouth Town
- Credit: Archant
Exmouth Town will play their first pre-season friendly at home to Verwood Town from the Wessex League on Saturday, kick-off at Southern Road is 1pm.
For manager Kevin Hill, the return to training has meant a return to some semblance of normality and he is relishing the opportunity to watch his players in a proper game environment for the first time in six months.
It is also the perfect opportunity to look at different options in terms of personnel and formations.
"It’s nice to back to some normality in football," said Hill. "We had our second training session down the beach on Saturday and another one on Wednesday before starting games this Saturday.
"The first game is about getting used to the football routine for both players and the management. As long as we don’t come out with any injuries, I’m looking forward to giving the players minutes out on the pitch.
"I will look at other players as well, gauge fitness and a lot of them will have 45 minutes each. I don’t want to come back and flog them because that’s how you get injuries. We’ll have a squad of around 18, so I can share things around.
"Pre-season is an opportunity to try different formations, different systems. While it’s nice to have that winning feeling, pre-season is not about victories. Last year, we lost games in pre-season and then started the league season really strong.
"It’s about exploring different scenarios; what would do without certain players, how do we adapt. Pre-season is a time to experiment with systems, looking at players and then filter down in the last couple of games to be ready for the proper matches.
"When you take on teams like Tiverton, we’re not expecting to win but I want my players to be chasing the ball, building up fitness and showing they can still communicate when they’re tired. Those are the games where players learn."
Turnstiles open at midday and entry prices are £5 for adults, Over 65s and Under 18s £3, Under 16s free. Entry will be cash only through the turnstiles and Covid regulations in place throughout Southern Road.